A busy day

Samain and the Winter Solstice Moon

Tuesday gratefuls: Colonoscopy prep. Jon last night. Cancer worries. Jon’s 53rd on Friday. At Gaetano’s. Ruth and Gabe putting their Hanukkah gift mugs in my cabinet. Our cabinet. Cabinets emptied. Whew. Bowe starts demo today. The new cabinets, the bottom ones needed for the quartzite fabricators are here. Bowe installs those on Thursday. The plan anyhow. Herme is home. Neon. Noble gases. Elements. Sulfur. Helium. Carbon. Uranium. Lead. Potassium.

Sparks of Joy and Awe: Phase Four

Tarot: Six of Stones, wildwood


Dove off of always under construction Highway 70 at the Peoria exit. Then spent an interesting 15 minutes searching for Identgo, the TSA contractor for my TSA prechek appointment. 39th Street is a boundary line. On its south flank Aurora extends into its eastern suburbs. On its north it serves as an artery for capillary streets that end at the freeway’s fence. Concrete buildings with truck bays facing the street. A few RV’s parked in what look like permanent positions. Lots of extended chain link topped with razor wire. The faceless underbelly of small companies or the warehouses for big ones.

Identgo, also the site of Unicorn Drug testing, sat at the end of one of eight rows of sad, buff colored small offices. Christ-Ministry. Gospel Church. Mountain Stone. Identgo.

I had a thick sheaf of documents, divorce decree, marriage licenses, a birth certificate. They stayed in their envelope. This was a much more casual process than I had imagined. The gender fluid person who checked me had on outrageous boots. Made of brocade with thick laces and standing on 5 inch heels these were uncommon.

“Those are some boots” started a longer conversation. They showed me photos of other cool boots. A Canadian designer was their favorite. He also had high boots that looked like cows hooves. Dress shoes in yellow. Or, fading from yellow to purple.

They had been in Tokyo and NYC working for Identgo. In spite of the cheesiness of the office, the process itself was high-tech and quick. A handheld computer did most of the work. A blue screen for a photo, $85 and Bob’s your uncle.

Hopped onto 70 listening to a CPR program about Westside Story and why Puerto Ricans felt a remake was overdo. Short answer: Rita Moreno was the only PR in the first version though she did win an Oscar. Also, it reinforced Puerto Rican’s as an immigrant group somehow involved in teen delinquency. Might not have been so bad if it didn’t go on to become the best musical and fourth favorite movie of the Oscars.

Turned off I-25 near Bronco’s Stadium and into another, more upscale warren of businesses. Zuni Street. At 13th, near the brand new and strange Meow Wolf, I turned left into a newer, snazzier business mall. Morry’s Neon.

When I got there Tina, Glen, and one of the master benders were eating Mexican food off paper plates. Probably food truck fare. Glen took me back in the shop, plugged in the Hermit. I said. Wow. He smiled. Showed me how he would hang it. Clean it with a soft brush. The transformers good for about ten years. Other than that. No maintenance.

Tina took my money. Glen loaded Herme in the back of Ruby. Onto a moving blanket I had positioned there for that purpose. Back up the hill. And, none too soon.

Since Kate’s illness, the pandemic, and her death, I’ve not gone down the hill much. I find myself overstimulated in the city. Traffic. Exits. Navigating. Too many people. Lights. Police. Just. More. Than. I. Need. Strange for a guy who did  nothing but urban work for over 25 years. But, true. Exurban, mountain me.

When I got back, the remainder of the cabinet cleanout. Though I had a huge stack of boxes in the living room on Saturday, I used all of them except one. I did the last few jars while I fed the dogs this morning. Lots of evidence of mice. Wish I could have a cat.

This whole process got hard. Oh, I remember Kate using this cherry pitter. Who owns a cherry pitter, anyhow? Her canning stuff, pressure cooker, water bath. Empty Ball jars. The mustard yellow fondue pot. A relic of the sixties. Her sixties.

There’s a dark beauty in grief. As it deepens feelings, it opens me to more feelings, to the wonder of our time together. Cooking. Harvesting honey. I came across a quart jar of Artemis Honey with the Ode made label still on the lid. Peaches. 2016. 2018. Western slope peaches. Canned right here. There was currant jelly, too. Ground cherry, wild grape. All by her hand. So much. Quilts. Mug rugs. Runners. What a life we had.

In an hour I’m leaving to take Jon to his colonoscopy. Sarah and BJ, two of Kate’s sisters, may have convinced him to let them help him sort out his house. That would be a big deal. He might get the stimulus to finish the kitchen, other rooms. That would be so good.